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Friday, February 15, 2013

GRA in distress action to enforce tax compliance

The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) has been impressing on businesses in the Ashanti region to honour their tax obligations, especially with the Value Added Tax.

The distress action is to retrieve accruing revenue from defaulting business establishments.

About five cargo trucks evading tax have been impounded, some businesses shut and managers arrested in Kumasi within the fie-day exercise.

Officials at the GRA’s Debt Management and Compliance Enforcement Unit have observed low compliance of VAT laws and regulations among both small and big institutions.

The on-going distress action targets institutions that have either refused to file VAT returns or defaulted in payment of other taxes.

“As when they are arrested, we make them to pay the tax; this vehicle that we’ve arrested they quickly went and issue the VAT invoice and the tax element would be accounted for,” said Wisdom Kofi Xetor, an enforcement officer.

Total revenue retrieved over the period would not be disclosed, but in one instance, an arrested cargo truck carried a single invoice with a VAT component in excess of Gh₵5,000.

Mr. Xetor says significant impact has been achieved, stating that the distress action puts businesses on the alert to honour their tax obligation.

The GRA expect institutions to voluntarily pay their taxes to avoid confrontations with tax agents.

Story by Kofi Adu Domfeh

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